LifeRider is already the eighth studio album from Swiss band, Crystal Ball. But itīs only the second, featuring the new line-up with singer Steven Mageney. The new silver disc is more harmonic than the last record, Dawnbreaker, and the 12 tracks rock from beginning to end. For the song, Eye To Eye, Crystal ball got support from Noora Louhimo, singer of Finnish band, Battle Beast. The uptempo duet turned out really nice, although Noora occasionally steals Stevenīs show. Musically, I think Crystal Ball have grown, taking more care of matching music and Mageneyīs voice as perfectly as possible. This is something that didnīt work so well last time. Songs like Paradise or Gods Of Rock kick ass, shining with very catchy melodies. They are my favourites on the album. But, of course, a Hard Rock album also needs ballads such as Bleeding. However, this song lacks some emotions. Unfortunately, Stevenīs voice is not really made for this task. If you buy the digipak version of the album, you get three extra songs: Sacred Heart, Sign of the Southern Cross and Not Like You. The investment is worth it.
No matter how long I search, I canīt really find anything bad on LifeRider. I deduct one point because I miss variety in Stevenīs voice and emotion with the ballads. Otherwise, LifeRider is a great release and you should get a copy.